Ask any of the guys on Holowesko|Citadel the best part about being a pro cyclist, and they’ll all answer: the travel.
“Riding with a team allows me to see parts of the world that I never imagined I would be able to experience,” says Joe Lewis, a veteran member of the team who’s originally from Australia.
To be sure, traveling can have its share of challenges as well. Lewis recalls his first experience touring with the team: “It was the Tour of China. I arrived at 2:00 a.m. when everyone else was asleep. Somehow they thought I was coming in the next day. So yea … I was stuck in an airport in rural China. But I managed. I took a taxi and found my way. That’s just what you have to do sometimes.”
Though details like flight times and traffic will always be out of our control, cyclists can still take other precautions in order to remain safe and healthy.
Kyle J. Cassas, MD, team physician and Primary Care Sports Medicine Specialist with the Greenville Health System and Steadman Hawkins Clinic of the Carolinas, offers some advice for cyclists who plan to travel:
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has some great suggestions for traveling. In their words, “Be proactive. Be prepared. Be protected.” In short, you should:
Understand the risks of illness endemic to the area you’re traveling.
Gather important information about your travel destination and planned activities.
Assess your own health status and needs.
Consult your local health agency or primary care physician to ensure your immunizations are up to date for the area you are traveling (examples: Tetanus, Hepatitis, Typhoid, Malaria and Yellow Fever).
Make sure you have any regular medications you may need as well as a travel medical and first-aid kit.
Keep on-hand copies of important documents: health insurance, passport, proof of vaccinations, emergency contact information, and copies of important prescriptions.
Consider food and water safety. Always safe to consume are hot foods and dry, packaged foods, as these contain the least number of germs. Be careful of raw food or street food.
Don’t forget about protecting your eyes! Always have a quality pair of sunglasses on-hand (Holowesko|Citadel uses Oakley).
Keep your hands clean. Wash your hands often with soap and water, and keep hand sanitizer nearby.
Consider travel health insurance, which will help cover expenses should you need them.
Cassas strongly recommends downloading the CDC’s TravWell App. In this app, you can select the country to which you’re traveling, and it will suggest packing lists, vaccines, medication, travel and medical kits, and steps to take before and during the trip. In addition, the app provides a place to store important travel documents.
Last, once you have yourself covered, don’t forget about protecting your bike! If you’re driving to your destination, a quality bike rack is essential, and if you’re flying, a travel case makes your life a lot easier. Holowesko|Citadel relies upon Thule to transport their BMC bikes safely to the next destination.